The federal election campaign so far has easily been dominated by one issue — the economy.

The issue was pushed aside briefly last week when the plight of Syrian refugees was driven home by the heartbreaking photo of a young boy who drowned in a desperate attempt to leave the violence in Syria.

But for those who want to see other agendas debated on the campaign trail, the election so far has been frustrating.

CBC News examined what each of the three main political party leaders talked about in the first month of the campaign, in speeches and press conferences, to compare what issues came up often and those that did not.

No surprise, the economy came up the most frequently.

Other issues, such as the environment and climate change, were reduced to fine print.

Louise Comeau, an activist with Climate Action Network, said she isn't surprised.

"It comes up, but it hasn't come up in what I would characterize in an honest and realistic way," Comeau said.

For example, Comeau notes that a Canadian delegation will travel to Paris this December for a United Nations meeting on climate change, where the world will commit to new cuts in greenhouse gas emissions.

But she argues there's been no discussion from party leaders over how they would reduce emissions and move away from a reliance on fossil fuels.

Instead, Comeau says the closest politicians get to talking about climate change is during announcements on other topics such as infrastructure and pipelines.

"When candidates say you can have oil development and get resources to market, and still solve climate change, we're not being honest with ourselves and Canadians," Comeau said, from her home in New Brunswick.

MDs who want to go viral

She isn't the only one who is frustrated.

Kingston cardiologist Dr. Chris Simpson also feels ignored.

He had to resort to making this YouTube video to try to have a discussion about health care and seniors.

He's the past president of the Canadian Medical Association, which has joined with other organizations to circulate an online petition to demand politicians to commit to developing a seniors strategy.

The Green Party has been the only one to bring it up at all so far.

"I think we're a little disappointed in the fact that we haven't seen the party leaders talk about it in the way we hoped they would." Simpson said.

 Simpson admits the other problem is the public, which isn't pushing their local candidates to talk about health care.

"I think its fair to say there's some frustration. We've had many elections fought over the past several years at the provincial and federal level where promises have been made, well intended promises, but the results have always been disappointing," Simpson said.

Clean needles for the economy?

Blocks from Parliament Hill, Rob Boyd is trying to raise another issue.

He runs the Oasis program at the Sandy Hill Community Centre, which helps drug addicts get clean needles, find housing, and health care.

He wants to add a safe drug injection site to that list.

But the only time those sites come up during the election campaign is when the Conservatives argue against it, telling supporters it would make communities unsafe.

Boyd thinks leaders might be interested in talking about it if they tied it back to the economy.

"You think about the tremendous cost of incarcerating and enforcing people for possession substance because they have a substance use disorder. if that money was saved, and was turned into the health care system, or education system, that would be a tremendous benefit to the economy," Boyd said.

With six weeks left to go until voting day, both Simpson and Comeau say there is plenty of time to still press the leading political parties on more than just economy.